…A survey on the problems of businesses was conducted among the Kyrgyz entrepreneurs. 3022 enterprises took part in it, most of them relatively young. 42% of the participating businesses received licenses in the last 2.5 years, 58% - have been operating in the market for less than 5 years. More than half of the survey participants are private entrepreneurs. For the most part they are representatives of SME. Only 5% of the interviewed have more than 100 workers employed.
Almost half of the respondents were confident of their businesses. This optimism is especially true for the Southerners. 62% of Osh and Talas residents plan to expand as demand for their goods and services in going up. The Northerners are more reserved in terms of optimistic forecasting. Only 36% of the entrepreneurs are anticipating further growth.
Both in the South and in the North, businesses name lack of financial resources and limited availability of loans as the main obstacles to development. Low purchasing power of the population is another problem for the entrepreneurs.
Many (89% of those, operating in production sector) are concerned with sky rocking equipment prices. Young entrepreneurs believe that lack of marketing and management skills is a true calamity. 71% of the Southern businesses are in need of technical training for their personnel.
68% of survey participants pointed out the increase in competition in the last year, 34% complaint of having to compete with dishonest entrepreneurs, trading poor quality goods, often smuggled. Farmers in the South and in Talas are also concerned with the monopoly rights of foreign companies for tobacco and legumes. 26% believe that they are on unequal terms with the state-owned companies.
68% of the interviewed believe that the current business legislature is ineffective and that the courts are bribed or under pressure when making decisions.
Corrupted state authorities are a special topic for absolutely all respondents. 66% of the interviewed believe that the rising registration costs and lengthy procedures to get a license are unjustified – there are too many officials willing to make money on it. It’s getting harder every year to get registered or receive a license.
53% of the entrepreneurs (both in the South and in the North) have bluntly stated that the representatives of tax services pose a serious obstacle to business development in the Kyrgyz Republic. When the businesses were asked to make additional comments, most of them pointed out that the government should reduce the number of revisions and put an end to bureaucratic interference into the business affairs.
Rossiskaya Gazeta, January 17, 2003